2012 predictions for the CRM market

SugarCRM talks customer centric systems, Cloud and collaboration

It is predicted that 2012 will be the year when customer relationship management (CRM) software becomes truly customer centric and based on an open, Cloud orientated model, SugarCRM’s country manager has claimed.

Speaking with CIO Australia, Australian country manager, Tony Hughes, said a second generation of CRM tools is set to emerge next year.

“The thing that’s pretty interesting is that CRM is about making the IT environment truly customer centric,” Hughes said.

“There’s a second generation of CRM and people say integrating social media is important to the enterprise.”

Hughes said SugarCRM, which recently acquired iExtensions; the tool that makes CRM software for IBM Lotus Notes users, and has 600 customers in Australia, is predicting 2012 will be a year defined by CRM systems that don’t cause vendor lock-in.

“I don’t think a CIO wants to be forced into a proprietary environment that locks them in,” he said. “They want the flexibility to move it into a computer room or into another vendor’s Cloud environment.”

Hughes said a shift away from ERP systems will mean the role of the CRM will be expanded in 2012, and will take advantage of mobility and real time data.

“I think CRM is going to be more about a presentation environment for any organisation that wants to be customer centric,” he said.

“The problem with ERP systems is that they are inflexible and not at all customer centric, so I think CRM is going to be increasingly about information and providing real time information for mobile workers.”

Follow Lisa Banks on Twitter: @CapricaStar

Follow CIO Australia on Twitter: @CIO_Australia

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